Sciatica is caused by a pinching or compression of the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve is the largest nerve in the body. It connects the spinal cord with the leg and foot muscles. The sciatic nerve runs along the lumbar spine, across the buttocks, and through the legs.
Symptoms of Sciatica
Sciatica pain can be anywhere from mild to excruciating. It occurs in the thigh, leg, and buttocks. It often includes muscle weakness, numbness, or tingling in the lower back, the hip, and the leg. Sciatica almost always only affects one side of the body at a time. If the pain occurs in both legs, it might be a different condition.
Causes of Sciatica
There are many things that can lead to sciatica. These causes include:
- A slipped or herniated lumbar disc
- Disc degeneration
- Spinal injury
- Inflamed muscles
- Job that requires extensive sitting or failure to use muscles
- Excessive weight can cause pressure to the sciatic nerve
- Physically demanding occupation, especially one that requires frequent lifting and twisting
In many cases, sciatica goes away on its own. However, if the pain perseveres, it may be important to seek medical assistance. A chiropractic professional will be able to help you determine the cause of your sciatic nerve pain, as well as provide the best treatments for your sciatica.